Editor's Note (from Slant Magazne): House Playlist is a series dedicated to highlighting our favorite new singles, leaked songs, and album tracks. Found something we should hear? Let us know!
Girls' Generation, "Hoot." This one may be a few months old in its native South Korea, but that doesn't keep "Hoot" from being one of the best discoveries of 2011 on this side of the Pacific. The best K-Pop singles take a truly fearless approach to appropriating different genres for fun and profit, and "Hoot" starts off as a bit of jagged guitar pop as forceful and catchy as any of Max Martin's productions for Kelly Clarkson. But the song shifts its focus to the dance floor once the multi-tracked percussion loops kick in. The layered rhythm arrangement works with the song's overall conceit, which finds the girls giving an overdue brushoff to an acid-tongued boyfriend. His poison-tipped arrows are the "trouble, trouble, trouble" of the simple-is-better hook, and the group's cheerleading-squad-as-girl-group structure gives their off-you-go message its own built-in support group. The choice of violent imagery belies the apparent sweetness of the group's nine members and the single's simply massive hooks, but it's a perfect fit with the James Bond guitar figure that runs throughout. As far as 007 motifs doubling as pop songs go, "Hoot" fully holds its own alongside Britney Spears's "Toxic."
Source: Slant Magazine